CS4HS Academy 2016-17

Overview

Thanks to a generous grant from Google’s CS4HS program, the Computing Science Departments at the University of Alberta and MacEwan University will be hosting a CS4HS Academy for K to 12 teachers in 2016-17.

Strands and Communities of Practice

The Academy will be organized as a set of “strands” with each strand’s activities consisting of face to face work fairs, on-line resource sites and community forums. This constellation of face to face sessions, supporting resource sites and forums is designed to foster on-going, collaborative Communities of Practice.

The theme of this year-long Academy is Computing, Coding and K-12 Computing Science. The intent is to encourage K-12 teachers to incorporate computational thinking, programming and computing science into their classrooms. To accommodate the various grade levels, we will have the following strands:

  • Kindergarten to Grade 3 (Div 1) with a focus on simple robotic environments and Scratch Jr
  • Grade 4-6 (Div 2) with a focus on Scratch
  • Grade 7-9 (Div 3) with a focus on Scratch and Python
  • Grade 10-12 (Div 4) with a focus on Processing and Java

We are also looking at including the new Education Edition of Minecraft, and the Raspberry Pi and Arduino computing platforms in the appropriate strands. At this point we do have a work fair for the Pi and Arduino. We are still working on developing something for Minecraft.

Work Fairs

Each strand’s activities will be kick started with one or more work fairs. Each work fair will be a collaborative session where small groups of teachers can work together to identify, assemble and/or create materials that they can use in their classes in the coming year. They will be led by one or more veteran teachers and/or academics who will work with the participants to help them achieve their goals. The fairs will be similar to traditional workshops but with more opportunity for collaboration and teacher-to-teacher networking.

Work Fairs 2016

At present seven work fairs and their accompanying resource sites and online forums are being developed. The work fairs will take place in the last two weeks of August at MacEwan University.

Register now

Language / Platform Guide

  Suggested Audience
  (Div 1)
Lower Elementary
(Div 2)
Upper Elementary
(Div 3)
Junior High
(Div 4)
High School
Osmo, Dash & Dot X      
Scratch Jr X      
Scratch
 
X
X
 
Python
 
 
X
X
Raspberry Pi, Arduino
 
 
X
X
Processing
 
 
 
X
Java    
X

Session Details

Dates Description Audience
Aug 15 (AM)

Starting Kids on Coding, Robotics and Maker Projects

half-day session designed to introduce teachers to a number of approachable computing and thinking technologies that can be used with our youngest students. This work fair will introduce students to physical coding (Osmo), a variety of other iPad apps for more conventional coding, robotics (Dash and Dot) and a number of simple Maker projects.

Session full. However, we are looking to expand the numbers we can accept and/or offer an additional session so please register if interested. We'll do our best to accommodate everyone.

Div 1, interested Div 2
Aug 15 (PM)

Getting Started with Scratch Jr and Scratch: Teaching Thinking, Story Telling and Coding

A half-day session designed to introduce teachers new to Scratch Jr and Scratch 2.0, the basics of the two environments. This will be done by using story-telling developmental techniques to teach the basic elements of the environment as well as computational thinking. Teachers will be guided through the creation of a story using Scratch Jr, Scratch or both.

Session full. However, we are looking to expand the numbers we can accept and/or offer an additional session so please register if interested. We'll do our best to accommodate everyone.

Div 1, interested Div 2 + 3
Aug 16 & 17

Teaching Thinking through Story Telling, Simulating and Gaming with Scratch

Two independent one-day sessions focusing on using Scratch to teach computational thinking. 

Day one will focus on linking computational thinking approaches with formal story-telling and scripting techniques to author stories in Scratch.

Day two will focus on linking computational thinking approaches with the scientific method to create simple simulations and games in Scratch.

Session almost full. Please register quickly. If session fills we will try to increase the numbers we can accept and/or offer an additional session.

Div 2, interested Div 3 + 1
Aug 18 & 19

Creating a Junior High Computational Thinking Program 

Two independent one-day sessions focusing on using Scratch, Python and other appropriate environments to build a Junior High or Middle School computing program.

Day one will focus on developing a program over time. Participants will look at different ways they can build a program, examine and adapt existing plans and explore how they can use extra-curricular, co-curricular and in class projects to start program building. The focus will be on creating a Junior High or Middle School computing oriented CTF program.

Day two* will focus on some of the environments that can be used in a Middle School / Junior High environment. Participants will work independently on projects of their choosing - using Scratch, Python and/or HTML/CSS.

*Important Note: As day two of this work fair is primarily an autonomous course work development time (where participants can work in environments and projects of their choosing) it is open to ANY participant who wishes to work on Scratch, Python or HTML/CSS projects.

Div 3, interested Div 2 + 4
Aug 22 & 23

Using the Raspberry Pi, Arduino and other Platforms to teach Computational Thinking

Two independent one-day sessions focusing on the Raspberry Pi, Arduino and other related hardware platforms to teach computational thinking.

Day one will outline how technologies such as the Pi, Arduino and other similar systems can be used to help students apply computational thinking processes. Participants will focus on the Pi; working through a set of Pi projects designed to “walk” students through some of the more basic aspects of computational thinking.

Day two will follow the same basic pattern used in day one. However, it will tend to deal with more demanding aspects of computational thinking and the focus will be on the Arduino environment.

Div 4, interested Div 3
Aug 24

Using Processing as an Entry Language in CSE

This one-day session session will introduce teachers to the Processing environment. Processing is a highly engaging entry level language that was built for the electronic arts and visual design communities. This allows even beginners to write programs that manipulate graphics right from day one. As this language is based on the Java language, it makes an excellent entry ramp to Java. Teachers already familiar with Processing will work through a set of projects which they could, in turn, use with their classes.

Div 4
Aug 25 & 26

Incorporating the AP CS Principles course into CSE

Two independent one-day sessions focusing on how schools might incorporate the new AP CS Principles course (with its emphasis on Computational Thinking and Understanding by Design) into Senior High CS programs.

Day one will focus on the CS Principles course and how it might be offered in conjunction with a “regular” CSE pathway as well as with the AP CS ’A’ and IB CS courses.

Day two* will focus on some of the computational environments such as Python, Processing, Greenfoot, etc. that can be used in the Principles course.

*Important Note: As day two of this work fair is primarily an autonomous course work development time (where participants can work in environments and projects of there own choosing) it is open to ANY participant who wishes to work on Scratch, Python, Processing, or any other environment covered in the various work fairs.

Div 4, interested Div 3

Register now

Please contact Harvey Duff at hduff@ualberta.ca if you need further information.